Pediatricians along with parents, share responsibilities to promote the growth, development, and well-being of children. We are trained to recognize conditions that are simply variations of normal(and individuals vary greatly) and those that represent abnormalities. The aim of well child care is to follow, in an organized manner, the growth and development of infants and children and, hopefully, to recognize early abnormalities that may occur at a time when solutions are more easily achieved. Through this method of care the pediatrician hopes to help parents help their children meet challenges to their physical, mental, and emotional integrity. Much of this falls in the realm of "preventive medicine". Well child care - especially for newborn, infant and pre-school children - affords the pediatrician a chance to answer your questions about your individual child's progress and to help you as a parent be a trained observer of your child for developmental progress and signs of illness. The aim is for the pediatrician and parent to join in meeting the best interests of the child and help him to reach his full potential.
Physical exams for school age children are recommended every 1-2 years to continue to follow growth patterns. Occasionally school or other activities will require annual physical exams which we are glad to do. These routine exams should continue at least until the child leaves high school, and even to age 21.
Much of our well child care schedule is designed to coincide with the recommended dates for immunizations.
Immunizations are now available for a variety of viral and bacterial diseases and are directly responsible for the diminished incidence of diphtheria, polio. whooping cough (pertussis), rubella (German measles), rubeola (red measles), tetanus, mumps, and now chickenpox. It is the responsibility of the parent to secure these immunizations. Eradication of most of these diseases is possible when there is a lack of susceptible hosts in the population. Therefore it is important to immunize your child not just for his benefit, but also to further protect others from infections he might otherwise spread. Disease eradication is possible, as evidenced the disappearance of smallpox, but widespread cooperation is required. The personal benefit is also great, as effective treatment for many of these diseases does not exist. Prevention is best. Vaccines, however beneficial, are not perfect, and many have minor side effects, and rare risks. Your doctor will go over all of this with you before the immunizations are given.
These are a few of the reputable web sites available to the public that pertain to vaccines.
Center for Disease Control
National Network for Immunization Information
Immunization Action Coalition
American Academy of Pediatrics
The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
A Vaccine Information Statement (VIS) is a one-page (two-sided) information sheet, produced by CDC. VISs inform vaccine recipients - or their parents or legal representatives - about the benefits and risks of a vaccine. The law requires that VISs given out whenever certain vaccinations are given.
|3-5 days||First exam after newborn discharge|
|2 months||Exam, DTaP, IPV, PRV, HIB-HEP B, Rota Teq|
|4 months||Exam, DTaP, IPV, PRV, HIB, Rota Teq|
|6 months||Exam, DTaP, IPV, PRV, HIB-HEP B, Rota Teq|
|12 months||Exam, MMR, Varivax, Prevnar, Hemoglobin, Lead level|
|18 months||Exam, DPaT, HIB, HEP A|
|2 years||Exam, HEP A|
|3 years||Exam, vision, blood pressure|
|4 years||Exam, vision, blood pressure|
|5 years||Exam, DTaP, MMR, IPV, Varivax, vision, blood pressure|
|6 years||Exam, vision, blood pressure|
|8-18 years||Annual Exam, Vaccines will be discussed|
|DTaP||Diphtheria, acellular Pertussis, Tetanus|
|Gardisil||Human Papillomavirus Quadrivalent|
|IPV||Inactivated Polio vaccine|
|HIB||Haemophilus Influenzae Type B|
|HBV||Hepatitis B vaccine|
|Menactra||Meningococcal Conjugate Vaccine|
|MMR||Measles, Mumps, Rubella|
|Hep A||Hepatitus A|
|Rota Teq||Rotavirus Vaccine|
|Prevnar||Pneumococcal Vaccine Conjugate|
Other vaccines that are now routinely required include:
Many of the vaccines listed above are already required for entrance into college and we expect the state to institute requirements for more of these vaccines in the near future.